July 2018 Visa Bulletin

The July 2018 Visa Bulletin was released this morning. Most notably, there was major movement in the EB2 India, EB3 India, EB2 China, and F2B categories. Additionally, EB3 China retrogressed, most likely through the end of the fiscal year. If you are now eligible to file your adjustment of status, you can go ahead and file it. If you need help, feel free to contact us at info@watsonimmigrationlaw.com.

July 2018

For all countries except India, China, Philippines, and Mexico: F2A category priority date advances 14 days to 22 June 2016, F2B preference advances 54 days to a PD of 15 August 2011, F4 category advances 24 days to 15 November 2004; EB1, EB2, and EB3 all remain current.

For India only:  F2A category advances 14 days with the priority date 22 June 2016, F2B preference advances 54 days to a PD of 15 August 2011, F4 advances 7 days to a PD of 15 March 2004; EB1 remains at a PD of 1 January 2012; EB2 advanced 83 days to a PD of 15 March 2009; EB3 advances 184 days to a PD of 1 November 2008.

For China Only: EB1 remains at a PD of 1 January 2012; EB2 advances 122 days to a PD of 1 January 2015; EB3 retrogresses to a PD of 1 January 2013; EB5 Non-Regional Center and Region Center remain at a PD of 1 August 2014.

For Vietnam Only: EB-5 Non-Regional Center and Regional remain at a PD of 1 August 2014.

Can file your immigrant applications if PD before:

F2A 1 December 2017; F2B 8 January 2012; F4 1 May 2005 for All Areas except India, China, Philippines, and Mexico and 1 January 2005 for India

EB1 is current for all countries; EB2 All Countries except India and China are current; EB3 All countries except China, India, and the Philippines are current; EB2 India advances to 22 May 2009; EB3 India advances to 1 May 2009 EB2 China advances to 1 April 2015; EB3 China remains at 1 January 2016; EB5 China (RC and non-RC) advances to 1 October 2014. Vietnam is not individually listed.

*If you have any questions or comments, you are welcome to get in touch with us. Please email us at info@watsonimmigrationlaw.com 

**Copyright 2017 by Watson Immigration Law. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Notes copied from the Department of State regarding Visa availability:

*NOTE: For July, F2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are authorized for issuance to applicants from all countries with priority dates earlier than 08JUN16. F2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are authorized for issuance to applicants chargeable to all countries EXCEPT MEXICO with priority dates beginning 08JUN16 and earlier than 22JUN16. All F2A numbers provided for MEXICO are exempt from the per-country limit.

D.  SPECIAL IMMIGRANT (SI) TRANSLATOR CATEGORY VISA AVAILABILITY

Given the limited availability of visa numbers and the existing demand, the Department expects to reach the FY-2018 annual limit of 50 Special Immigrant Visas in the SI category early this year. As a result, it has been necessary to maintain a July Final Action Date of April 22, 2012. It is likely that number use will require the SI category to become “unavailable” in the coming months. Once the annual limit of 50 visas is reached, further issuances in the SI category will not be possible until October 2018, under the FY-2019 annual limit. The SQ Special Immigrant Visa category for certain Iraqi and Afghan nationals employed by or on behalf of the U.S. government in Iraq or Afghanistan is not affected and remains current.

E.   RETROGRESSION OF JULY EMPLOYMENT-BASED FINAL ACTION DATES

MEXICO E4 and SR:  As readers were advised in item E of the June Visa Bulletin, it has been necessary to retrogress the July Final Action Dates in an effort to hold worldwide number use within the maximum allowed under the FY-2018 annual limits.

The Mexico E4 and SR dates will return to October 22, 2016 for October, the first month of fiscal year 2019.

CHINA E3: There has been an extremely large increase in Employment Third preference applicant demand during the past two months.  This is due to the “downgrading” of status by applicants who had originally filed in the Employment Second preference. As a result, it has been necessary to retrogress the July Final Action Date to January 1, 2013 in an effort to hold number use within the FY-2018 per-country limit.

The China E3 date will return to June 1, 2015 for October, the first month of fiscal year 2019.

F.   EMPLOYMENT-BASED VISA AVAILABILTY IN THE COMING MONTHS

In recent weeks there has been a steadily increasing level of Employment-based demand for adjustment of status cases filed with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. A continuation of the current demand pattern would result in a temporary establishment or retrogression of some final action dates in an effort to hold number use within the FY-2018 annual limits.

Should such action be required, there would be a full recovery in the preference category for October, the first month of fiscal year 2019.